a visit with: Penny Rakov

Over the last couple months it's been an absolute pleasure to showcase our 2012 market artists, their work, and a little peek at where they make the magic happen. We hope you've enjoyed this new series as much as we have!

Now that you know a little more about our talented makers, we hope you'll remember to say hello to your favorites as you shop our market filled with inspiring work and familiar faces. See you Saturday!

For our last visit this year, we're spending time with talented glassblower / jewelry designer and returning Second Storie vendor, Penny Rakov...

a visit with:

- Penny Rakov - 

What first inspired you to create/make what you do now?
I always loved color, and things that melted. So I was lucky to find glassblowing. But the skill of controlling hot glass took many years, and along the way I assembled scrap color (mine, and other peoples') into different patterns. That gave me a lot of freedom to play. It was in that play that my love of color, melting things and experimentation came together. I made a lot of tiny sculptures this way and I called them "pocket art." Many people told me that they liked them, but I was only able to sell them (which is important if you want to have money to make new work) when my friends who run a small shop in Philadelphia called Art Star gave me the genius suggestion to make jewelry. Which I love doing since it all ties back to my initial attraction to working with function and how objects interact with the human body.

Your advice for someone just starting out
and wanting to sell their work?
Just one? Man, I love giving young business owners/artists advice. So I think, the most important thing is LOVE what you do. It gets you through the tough spots. Don't make something just because you think it will sell, or because it sells for someone else well. The soul of your work reads clearly.

- her studio -

Three things or people who inspire you?
Well, I'm inspired by passionate people. Dick Marquis is a favorite glass artist of mine, so is Kait Rhodes. They are both fascinating to watch as they continue to evolve. And I am always looking at color combinations to give me new challenges. I see many in flowers and sea life.

- her work -

Favorite way to take a break/recharge your creative batteries?
I'm going lowbrow here, but after a big show I spend a few days hanging with my Boston Terrier, and playing Angry Birds while watching Law and Order marathons. Then, when I head back into the studio, I clean. Usually I can't finish cleaning without starting to put together something new, so the cycle begins again.

Get to know more about Penny here:


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